How Businesses Can Best Use Instagram

Mike web cropInstagram is fast becoming one of the busiest social media platforms. Brands ignoring its rise to more than 300 million daily users may well be cutting themselves off from untold audiences.

With the platform recently introducing a ‘stories’ feature, similar to its nearest rival Snapchat, it looks set to become even more popular. Cleverly coupling it with business tools, the app is now offering inroads into marketplaces that were previously inaccessible.

Equally, brands will now have a way of taking users on a journey. They can communicate values, cement a brand image and share content that might otherwise might not have made it on to their feed of perfectly edited images as the photos and videos disappear after 24 hours.

As you share multiple photos and videos on Instagram they appear together in a slideshow format which could lend itself to showing food and drink products being made step-by-step or a new product or campaign launch. You tend to get a younger demographic using Instagram so it can open up a new target market.

We’ve recently launched a new #FuelledByMilk campaign to promote the benefits of drinking milk after physical activity, spearheaded by 2015 British Superbike champion and World Superbike rider Josh Brookes. Instagram Stories lends itself perfectly as we can give followers a behind-the-scenes look at Josh’s exercise regime from beginning to end or preparation for a race culminating in the campaign’s key message that milk is one of the most effective drinks to rehydrate with.

As an agency we’ve been using Instagram for some time, and now clients are also starting to take the platform more seriously. Gaining followers can be challenging for lesser known brands, but engagement generally across the accounts we manage is up. And, thanks to another innovation from Instagram, we’ll soon we’ll be able to convert our clients’ accounts into business profiles with the ability to promote posts to a defined audience using parent company Facebook’s target and measurement tools.

By signing up for a business profile, brands can also choose how they want their customers to get in touch and a ‘contact’ button will link directly through to a phone number or email address.

Meanwhile, the new Insights tool will enable us to measure success and adapt our strategy accordingly. We welcome these latest innovations from Instagram and advise businesses not to miss out on the opportunity to reach new audiences in a fun and engaging way.


This post was originally published in issue 93 of Lincolnshire Business magazine.